Furious Barcelona residents have stormed the city’s beach to ‘reclaim’ it from tourists who they accuse of driving a spike in rowdy drunken behaviour.
Around a hundred activists descended on the white sands on Saturday to make their voices heard as several weary-looking visitors seemed to be sleeping off a heavy night nearby.
Organisers say they have seen a spike in loutish behaviour caused by hard-partying foreigners while increased tourist numbers have also driven up rent and house prices.
Furious locals in Barcelona held a protest on the city’s beach on Saturday to protest a spike in rowdy behaviour which they say is being caused by drunken foreigners
Two men seemed to be trying to sleep off a heavy night and were oblivious to protesters setting up signs demanding they leave just a few feet away from them
Activists were attempting to ‘reclaim’ the beach which they say is being treated like a resort by loutish visitors who spend the night drinking before going there to sleep it off
Locals are also angry that private apartment rentals are driving up the cost of properties as people buy up housing with the sole intention of letting it out to visitors
Tensions have been growing between authorities and hard-left groups who launched a campaign of vandalism against mass tourism in Barcelona and other parts of Spain.
Police on the island of Mallorca, and in particular the party town of Magaluf, have vowed to clamp down on public nuisances, many of which are caused by holidaying Brits.
At least 70 people have been fined for public nudity or sex this year alone, including one group who were filmed running through the streets naked.
Meanwhile authorities have proposed banning alcohol sales at airports or on flights, while hoteliers are reported to be drawing up a blacklist of badly behaved guests so they can be banned.
Bemused sunbathers watch as protesters form a human chain in front of the ocean in Barcelona in anger at the growth of tourism and privately rented apartments in the area
Spanish authorities are attempting to crack down on loutish behaviour by tourists across the country, but especially on the island of Mallorca which is notorious for its party scene
A banner in Catalan which reads ‘never again a summer like this’ was posted on the beach as locals demanded authorities take action over the growing numbers of tourists
Spanish authorities are facing demands from across the country to reign in the tourism industry, which sees 75million people visit each year to a country of 46million residents
Magaluf has long attracted negative headlines, most famously in 2014 when an 18-year-old British girl was filmed performing a sex act on 24 men in two minutes at Magaluf bar to win a £4 cocktail.
In addition to the new rules that will be imposed for the first time this summer, the number of police officers in the resort will be doubled during the busy months.
There will be 2,639 officers compared with 1,227 in 2016.
Spain, a country of 46 million, received 75.3 million tourists in 2016. The number of arriving tourists increased by 12 per cent in the first six months of this year.
Tourism accounts for 11 percent of Spain’s gross domestic product.
A banner reading ‘and now they want our houses’ is seen on Barcelona’s beach. Locals are angry that homes are being bought up and used as holiday rentals
Residents from the neighbourhood of La Barceloneta are at the heart of protests in the city, though similar movements have popped elsewhere including Ibiza and Mallorca
Protesters in inflatable dinghies hold a banner which reads ‘for the abolition of tourist apartments’ as sunbathers watch in Barcelona on Saturday
Airbnb, which allows people to rent out private apartments as holiday homes, is at the centre of much of the anger, as residents accuse the company’s business model of driving up prices
A plane towing a banner belonging to activist group Omniun Cultural, which reads ‘democracy!’, is seen flying over the beach